FC Goa earned valuable points with a hard-earned 2-0 win over Mumbai City FC in Indian Super League here Friday. The victory lifted the visitor to third place (24 points), three points behind the beaten host (still second with 27 points), for which the third defeat is a wake-up call as the competition heads towards the business end. Goals from Edu Bedia and Ferran Corominas proved critical at the Mumbai Football Arena.
Two direct free-kicks earned by Goa outside the box in the second half was evidence of the pressure it exerted the home defence. The set-pieces were off target, Bedia found the net in the 28th minute. Brandon Fernandes slipped a pass down the left for Corominas. Amrinder closed down the marauding striker racing in from the left, blocked the shot and then found himself stranded away from goal.
The ball rolled in the direction of in-form Bedia, who sized up the situation quickly to stretch his right foot and guide the ball in, off a defender’s leg. The second goal came via a spot-kick conversion by Corominas. Mumbai City was punished when Subhasish Bose’s tackle tripped the striker tumbling near the penalty spot. The second goal sealed Goa’s seventh win.
Earlier after kick-off, the Mumbai City goalkeeper responded with a reflex save, diving to his left, to fist away a crisp left-footed try by Mandar Dessai. Brandon set up his skipper for the shot with a dummy run over the ball relayed from the right. Goa probed for space from different angles, but was kept at bay by the rival defence.
Mumbai came out firing in the second half, came close to equalising twice. Goa goalkeeper, Mohammed Nawaz denied them the first time, the crossbar denied it the second time. Paulo Machado looped a free-kick over the defensive wall into space for Luican Goian arched his body and connected with his head, the ball bounced down off the bar, instead of trickling in.
Milan Singh and Goian got yellow cards for brutal tackles. Machado was unlucky to be carded for a foul he did not commit. Goa playmaker Ahmed Jahouh was floored after slipping on the turf, then went into a theatrical tumble and the referee flashed a yellow. Goa captain Mandar collected a yellow card, later Subhasish got a yellow for the tackle leading to the only penalty against the home team.
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